Dilemmas for a 'Trembling'-Related Program
ADDeRabbiI’m writing something for a program that an Orthodox community is running. They will be screening the film ‘Trembling before God’, followed by a breakout discussion section. I composed the following set of dilemmas for the group to discuss after the film. The goal is to get people thinking about the issues in a more complex way, and not, as is common, as a zero-sum game (see here for an earlier post on this topic). I’m curious what others have to say about these dilemmas, and feel free to propose other dilemmas as well.
- Should a shul grant a ‘family membership’ to a gay couple?
- If a monogamous gay man gets an aliyah, should he be allowed to make a mishebeirach for his partner? How would he refer to him? ‘Ba’ali (my husband)? shutafi (my partner)? Chaveri (my male friend)?
- Should the Orthodox community differentiate between gays with Jewish partners and gays with non-Jewish partners? Between gays with one partner and gays with multiple partners?
- Should the laws of ‘negiah’ apply to gays for members of their own sex? The opposite sex?
- What should a gay person do when in shul, if they are distracted by someone on their own side of the mechitza?
- Should gay women be encouraged to keep ‘taharat ha-mishpacha’ with their partners? What about gay men?
- Should our schools accept Jewish children of same-sex marriages?
- Should you pay a ‘shiva’ visit to someone mourning his or her same-sex partner?